iPhone WiFi question

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by paulold, Mar 17, 2008.

  1. paulold macrumors 6502

    Mar 3, 2008
    Washington, DC
    I have a new iPhone and I'm at work with it for the first time. My iPhone found a wireless network, that appears to be work-related, though I thought my company was anti-wifi for security reasons. Since it was not password-protected, I tried to use it. Though the signal strength appears to be strong, nothing is working for me. Since I am new to using wifi networks (other than my own at home), is this normal? When you are not at home, are you just trying to get onto any random wifi signal and some work, some don't?

    Another related question... I noticed that the iPhone refused to do anything, like check the weather or go to cnn.com on safari, when I was trying to use this WiFi network at work. I guess the phone was fooled by the strength of the signal, but nothing was working. Why did the iPhone just quit trying altogether instead of switching over to my cell phone network, which appears to be at full strength? I had to go into the settings and turn off the wifi in order to get it to use the cell phone network. And on the cell phone network, it's back to working. Doesn't it know the wifi network wasn't doing the job?
  2. McGiord, Mar 17, 2008
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2011

    McGiord macrumors 601


    Oct 5, 2003
    Dark Castle
    If you are not authorized to use it, better don't use it, you will get in trouble.

    What I had experience in hotels and public places is that sometimes you need to login and acknowledge the terms of service, even they are free wifi signals, by accessing their website in Safari, sometimes when you launch Safari you will get to that website directly, and sometimes it doesn't, so you need to find out what is the url.

    Also some people are wired to the net, and have their computers wifi sharing enabled and you capture their signals.
    sc2 replays
  3. jav6454 macrumors P6


    Nov 14, 2007
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    Many Wi-Fi spots are like that. You need a special identification of your device in order for Wi-Fi to actually work. You can still connect, but no internet is going through.

    Such Wi-Fi networks are better off not being conected, as trying to make them work is pointless and only drains battery.

    However, thats my thoughts on that hence my $0.02
  4. bowens macrumors 6502a


    Jun 19, 2006
    Trenton, FL
    It also could have been a device with Wifi not an actual connection to the internet. I've had some printers and computers show up as wifi but can't connect to the internet with them.
  5. Passante macrumors 6502a


    Apr 16, 2004
    on the sofa
  6. paulold thread starter macrumors 6502

    Mar 3, 2008
    Washington, DC
    Thanks for this tip! But it didn't work with the wifi network at work. I gave it a try and then went to Weather and it failed to update the weather. What still doesn't make sense is why didn't the iPhone go to the EDGE network when the Wifi network failed? Why did it simply give up trying to update the weather info when my EDGE network is working fine? Just seems odd that I have to go in and turn off the WiFi network in the Settings screen before it will use the EDGE network to update the weather. Even that document you referenced above briefly mentions the iPhone reverting to the EDGE network, saying what to do if the phone keeps reverting to EDGE instead of using the WiFi network - which is what I want to have happen here. Keep in mind, it's a new phone and I'm still learning. Perhaps I don't have some preference selected?

    Since this WiFi network doesn't appear to be working, should I turn off WiFi or should I choose "Forget this Network"? Forgetting seems ominous. Is that forever? If I choose "Forget..." can I get it back if in the future I learn how to use that network?
  7. kdarling macrumors demi-god


    Jun 9, 2007
    First university coding class = 47 years ago
    Very true. Airports are another place where you have to use Safari to log into an "open" hotspot.

    Also, I have a hotspot at home that doesn't use encryption, but I do have access limited by MAC address.
  8. specops macrumors regular

    Jun 29, 2007
    my guess is your work uses encryption and your iphone cant use the wifi because of it.

    or they could have VPN which the iphone only supports basic VPN. (VPN is software that you need a user name and password to use internet)

    It could be wifi 802.11n which iphone only works with 802G.

    So as you can see it could be a couple different reasons.

    Best way is to just ask your IT or superior about it.

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